Jon and Matt Back from Great Golf Vacation in Florida!

(Posted 4/16/2002) - Matt and I just got back from Ft. Lauderdale. Pat made our flight reservations on Spirit Airlines, whose prices were quite reasonable ($200 round trip each). The other advantage was that Spirit's gates are at the O'hare International terminal, so the delay getting checked in was actually less than at the larger domestic carrier's gates.

I made golfing reservations at three of Ft. Lauderdale's great courses (Colony West, Carolina Club, and Jacaranda West) on-line through Next Day Golf a fantastic service for out-of-state golfers. I was also pleasantly surprised to get 30% discounts off the prices listed on the website, since by Mid-April the high-season is almost over in Florida.

The weather was great each day. The light rains came early in the morning -- so we golfed in pleasant 80's temps, with just enough overcast and breezes to feel perfectly comfortable all three days we played.

Matt and I agreed that Jacaranda was the best of the three courses for the casual player (with great greens and no tricks like water hazards that cross fairways multiple times, or 160 yard carries over water off the tee). It was a great course to play and used rolling hills and trees to make each fairway and green seem private.

A Glen Ellyn friend, Sandy Pihos, graciously offered us the use of her family's winter residence in Pompano Beach, which put us in easy driving distance of the golf courses (The Pihos' keep a car at the residence year round which we used). I tried to take a picture of the front, but couldn't get far enough back to capture the whole house without crossing the road.

We really enjoyed the pool and spa, as well as the wide-screen HDTV in the entertainment center. Matt says he now knows what he's working towards, I guess the house really impressed him. As usual, I took a few pictures.

The ground floor is all in italian marble with 12-foot ceilings. The second floor has 10-foot ceilings; its a tall house!

The pool and spa in back are situated in a heavily landscaped groto-style arrangement which goes around to the sides of the house -- effectively shielding you from neighbors.

The house backs onto a private channel with a large boat dock. The neighbors across the way had a two mast 60-foot sailboat, so I think there are some serious sailors in the neighborhood.

Sandy says husband Bill will be shopping for a boat this summer. It will be interesting to see how these land-lubbers adapt to the ocean (the channel feeds into the Atlantic).